The Bradford American Legion Auxiliary Unit #445 has announced the selection of delegates for Illini Girls State 2017. The girls chosen to represent Bradford are: Jessica Sears, Delaney Johnston, and Ashley Estes. This year’s Illini Girls State will take place on June 18-24 at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston. The event is sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Illinois.
Jessica Sears is the 17-year-old daughter of Jess and Jan Sears, of rural Bradford. She will be a senior at Stark County High School in the next school year. While a student at SCHS, Jessica has been involved in volleyball and National Honor Society. She is very active in the sport of barrel racing and is an active member of the National Barrel Horse Association. Jessica has won local, regional and state recognitions, as well as being recognized in the “Barrel Horse World” magazine. She is also very involved with Northwoods Community Church where she volunteers with weekend activities and the children’s program. She and her family have been involved in starting a Northwoods Bureau County church in Princeton. After high school Jessica plans to pursue a career in nursing with a goal of becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner.
Delaney Johnston is the daughter of Michelle Masterson and David Johnston. She will be a senior at Stark County High School this fall where she is involved in volleyball, National Honor Society, softball, and the Smoking Free Ad Campaign.
Ashely Estes is the 17- year-old daughter of Troy and Janet Estes. She will be a senior at Stark County High School in the 2017-2018 school year. She is a member of the National Honor Society. Ashley works as a lifeguard at the Bradford Pool and also as a waitress at Pizza Hut. She plans to attend Methodist College of Nursing in the Fall of 2018.
American Legion Auxiliary Illini Girls State is a week long program dedicated to providing training for young women in city, county, and state government. They are placed into a two-party system and will run for office, campaign, vote, and write legislation pertinent to American Legion Auxiliary Illini Girls State as well as the state and nation.
Along with forming their own government on these three levels, they will also hear from guest speakers in the political arena (past and present), veterans and or active service men and women, American Legion Auxiliary members, and motivational speakers. Americanism and flag etiquette are taught this week as well.
Along with educational benefits and the importance of voting and getting involved in your community, state, and nation, our goal is also to give young women confidence and knowledge to go forward in their adult lives and not be afraid to go for their dreams.
The girls are sponsored by the Bradford American Legion Auxiliary Unit 445, with additional funding by Beta Sigma Phi and the Bradford Lions Club.